Behind The Scenes

The Friggin History of

It all started back in 1994. While still living at home with my parents I was sucked in to the world of computers. After screwing around with my first computer, a 486/66 Gateway, I discovered the magic of the online world through America Online. AOL got me hooked so bad that I was using the computer every day. That later led to physical problems with my mouse controlling arm... but nevermind that. I quickly taught myself how to do a lot of useless crap with the computer.

While teaching myself how to use the computer I'd created a cartoon graphic of Gary for Howard. Soon after that I snail mailed it to him on a floppy and he put it on his laptop computer and mentioned it on the air. I was so thrilled that I was motivated to create even more crap to send to the show. I was faxing pictures of Gary that I'd drawn but that wasn't good enough.

I soon discovered the Stern Show audio clips posted on AOL and then a little piece of software called ''Klik and Play'' which allowed me to create simple games in Windows 3.11. I thought that I could create some games based on the show so I started playing around with the software and eventually created my first game ''Baba Booey's Adventure'' (No longer available because of legal problems). I was able to animate my cartoon of Gary and use it in my game. He did various things like avoiding the snots coming out of a floating head that looked something like Howard Stern. It was a very primitive game but it was my first attempt. I even sent a copy to Fred Norris and Gary himself. I called Howard and asked him if he'd played the game but he just told me to ''Get a life!'' and hung up on me. That didn't stop me though.

I soon created my second game ''Baba Booey's Second Adventure'' and felt the need to let people see these dopey games. During this time I'd heard about this thing called the World Wide Web that was gaining in popularity. I then found out that AOL was offering free server space to create your own home page. I went out and bought a book about writing HTML code and by September 1995 I'd created my first crappy little web site... ''Mark Mercer's Internet Home Page''. All I really had to offer was my ''Baba Booey's Adventure'' games. I posted the games on the site and people seemed to enjoy them.

By late 1995 I was starting to post some information about the Stern show on the site. Just little mentions of various stuff happening on the show. I was also posting quite a few audio clips on the site but after reading so many articles about copyright laws and how people were getting sued for posting such things I decided to remove them from the site.

By January of 1996 I realized what people really wanted.. details about each show. I started out just writing a little bit about each show and who appeared that day. By then I was calling the site ''Mark Mercer's Friggin' Home Page''. The site soon started attracting more and more people and I was getting great feedback from the fans who were unable to hear the show.

As the site got more attention I got a little more bold with my language and that didn't sit too well with AOL's very conservative ''Terms Of Service'' agreement. By 1998 America Online caught wind (someone told on me) of the language I was using and they pulled the plug on the site. They deleted each and every file I had posted in my '''' directory. They e-mailed me and told me that if I were to continue to post ''adult language'' they would terminate my account. I posted a temporary page explaining what had happened and a few people offered to help. By then the site's name had changed to ''Mark's Friggin Howard Stern Stuff Home Page''. That would eventually be shortened to just plain ''Mark's Friggin Howard Stern Stuff''.

In April of 1998 a fan of the page from Vanguard Media came to my rescue and offered up hosting service if I wanted to create my own dot-com site. I didn't hesitate for one second. That's when was created. I soon had the site up and running and I was able to write and use any language I damn well pleased. The site continued to grow into what it is today.

Things were going pretty well until October 1999. That's when I received a letter from Howard's lawyer threatening me with legal action if I didn't remove ''streaming audio'' from the site. The funny thing was that I didn't have any audio clips on the site. I ended up calling the lawyer. He told me that the links I had to sites that did contain audio had to be removed. I complied with their wishes and removed quite a few links I had on the site. I was also asked to remove my ''Baba Booey's Adventure'' games because they contained audio clips from the show. I removed everything that I thought might cause a problem and continued to write my daily highlights each day. Things have been pretty smooth since then.

That's basically the history of the site in a nutshell. The site has grown over the past few years and it now attracts about 10,000 people a day. I had no idea that it would become as big as it did. I never thought, and I still don't think, of myself as a writer. I actually hate writing and I my grades in school prove that. My grammar sucks, my spelling is sub-par and I write like an 8th grader. For some reason people don't seem to mind that. From the feedback I get it seems that fans of my site just want the facts without the nonsense and filler so that's the way it's going to be.

Finally, I'd like to say thanks to all of you who have continued to visit the site on a regular basis. Some people have followed the site since it started back in 1995-1996. That's mind blowing to me. If you're new to the site I welcome you and hope that you enjoy it as much as everyone else has.

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